DEC 2, 2020 – NATIONAL FINALS RODEO, ARLINGTON, TEXAS
Due to streaming difficulties, I didn’t get to watch Round One, although some folks in the Cypress Hills and over at Bear Crick had no problems, I couldn’t get to first base. I wasn’t the only one; I received at least a half dozen calls from as diverse locations as Brooks to Eastend, and they weren’t able to get the livestream either. I hope they can fix whatever the problem is well before tomorrow’s broadcast, but I don’t understand why it wasn’t discovered and fixed in advance of the most important rodeo of the year – especially when the livestream was paid for – in advance!
Now – Round One Canadian news and notes:
In Bareback: Jimmy Lawrence’s son-in-law, Richmond Champion, won the first round with an 87.5 score on Blessed Assurance of J Bar J. Jimmy is a rodeo stock contractor from Kennedy, Sask.
Chad Rutherford on Calgary’s A-91 Agent Lynx picked up a 6th place cheque with his 84.5 score.
Orin Larsen of Inglis, Man., scored 81 pts on Scarlet Belle of Pickett Pro Rodeo.
In Steer Wrestling:
AQHA Champion dogging horse, Tyson, packed Jesse Brown and Blake Knowles to a one-two-three split with 3.9 secs. When it was Tyson’s owner, Curtis Cassidy’s (Donalda, Alta.) turn, he had a no-time when his steer got ahead of the hazing horse.
In Team Roping:
Kolton Schmidt of Barrhead, Alta., started his NFR with a no-time. Levi Simpson of Ponoka, Alta., and his heeler partner, Shay Carroll, didn’t place with a 6.1, but according to the radio broadcasters, he cast the best loop of the night because the steer was “hard to rope” because of its actions. No prize, but mucho-respect and still in the Average.
In Saddle Bronc:
The bronc riding was split between Rusty Wright and Lefty Holman – each with an 86. Only two Canadian SB horses were out tonight. Big Stone Rodeo’s 711 Rubels posted Shorty Garrett – severely. (Posted: slamming the rider against the post of the chute gate.) Shorty got a re-ride, and he scored an 82. It didn’t place, but it was a relief that he was able to take his re-ride. (I had predicted Rubels and Garrett would win the round, but it didn’t work out for the South Dakota bronc rider.)
The other Canadian horse out tonight was Outlaw Buckers OLS Tubs Magic Carpet. Two-time World Champion Taos Muncy scored 80.5 pts and no paycheque.
Two-time World Champion Zeke Thurston of Big Valley, Alta., started his title defence with an 81.5 on Championship Pro Rodeo’s Damaged Goods.
That’s it for the Canadian Content on Round One of the WNFR.
By the Way: Winning the NFR Average is the second-most prestigious title in American rodeo. I heard on the grapevine that they are holding a get-together for past NFR Average winners. A little bird told me that Ivan Daines of Innisfail, Alta., is heading that way. Ivan won the Average in 1970. That’s 50 years ago! Happy Anniversary, Ivan!
Round Two Stock Draw:
Bareback (BB): 19 Orin Larsen Inglis, MB 113 Friendly Skies Burch Rodeo
94 Jake Brown Cleveland, TX 313 Mayhem Big Stone Rodeo
In the Reride (RR) pen: Y-92 Yippee Kibitz/Calgary Stampede
Saddle Bronc Riding (SB): 114 Zeke Thurston Big Valley, AB 370 Total Equine’s Angel Fire Lancaster & Jones
89 Sterling Crawley Huntsville, TX S-65 Shadow Warrior Calgary Stampede
102 Cole Elshere Faith, SD B8 OLS Tubs Little Muffin Outlaw Buckers
115 Taos Muncy Corona, NM 373 Lunatic Party Outlaw Buckers
RR Pen: Y-15 Y U R Friskey/Calgary Stampede
Bull Riding (BR): 99 Colten Fritzlan Rifle, CO 35 Spotted Demon Big Stone Rodeo
21 Brady Portenier Caldwell, ID 269 Fish Camp Outlaw Buckers
RR: W20 War Cry Big Stone Rodeo Inc.
Watch WNFR Round 1 Highlights here!